By: Todd Heintzelman
MECHANICSBURG, PA – Greg Hodnett tuned-up for next weekend’s World of Outlaws-sanctioned Morgan Hughes National Open by winning the sprint car feature at Williams Grove Speedway on Friday night.
Hodnett’s fifth win of the season and 51st of his career extended his already large point lead in the Lawrence Chevrolet sprint car standings.
The Thomasville, Pa., driver earned $4,000 for the win in a sprinter owned by John Trone.
“We don’t get to start that far toward the front very often, so when it comes, you have to take advantage of it,” said Hodnett. “We probably weren’t the best car, but we held on and made some decent decisions in traffic to get the lead.”
The show was delayed for more than one hour when a wheel came off the 358 sprinter driver by DJ Montgomery hit and brought down wires on the frontstretch. Nobody was injured.
Daryn Pittman started on the pole and grabbed the early race lead over Alan Krimes and Hodnett. He pulled away until he got to lapped traffic, which allowed second and third to close.
Hodnett put a slider on Krimes for second, but he would fight back on the backstretch. Hodnett got back around Krimes in turn three, but Danny Dietrich drove by both of them and into second. Hodnett would take the spot back from Dietrich on the frontstretch.
Pittman, of Owasso, Okla., led by about a half-straightaway, but lost his momentum as he got back to lapped traffic.
Hodnett closed and was within striking distance at the flagstand on lap 17. He shot under the leader in turn one and used the bottom to drive by Pittman and into the lead. Hodnett would lead lap 18 with Dietrich charging into second.
As Dietrich was closing, the only caution flag of the event flew on lap 22 for a two-car crash in turn one.
Hodnett blocked low in turn one on the restart to keep Dietrich at bay and would score the win. Dietrich, Pittman, Krimes and Paul McMahon completed the top five.
Cory Haas, Adam Wilt. Brian Montieth, Rick Lafferty and Chad Layton completed the top 10. McMahon set fast time over the 31-car field with a lap of 16.690. Haas, Lafferty and Wilt won the eight-lap heat races. Pittman won the dash and Jim Siegel won the B-main.
Scott Fisher led the first four laps of the 358 sprint feature before Glenndon Forsythe drove by and into the lead in turn two.
Liverpool, Pa.’s, T.J. Stutts was up to second and drove by Forsythe in turn three to take the lead following a lap eight restart. They traded the lead again in turn one before Stutts secured the spot. Stutts would get the win by holding off Mark Smith and Pat Cannon over the final five laps.
Adrian Shaffer and Nate Hammaker completed the top five. Eric Tomecek, Jason Shultz, Forsythe, Ryan Wilson and Fisher completed the top 10.
Forsythe, Shaffer and Stutts won the eight-lap heat races and Tyler Ross won the consolation.
“We changed all four bars and all four shocks when we got here and I think it made a considerable difference,” said Stutts. “We were so bad the first few weeks here that we got to start up front and hold them guys off.”
410 Sprint Feature (25 laps): 1. Greg Hodnett. 2. Danny Dietrich. 3. Daryn Pittman. 4. Alan Krimes. 5. Paul McMahan. 6. Cory Haas. 7. Logan Schuchart. 8. Brian Montieth. 9. Rick Lafferty. 10. Chad Layton. 11. Jim Siegel. 12. Adam Wilt. 13. Lance Dewease. 14. Gerard McIntyre Jr. 15. Ryan Taylor. 16. Ryan Smith. 17. Brent Marks. 18. Jim Siegel. 19. Robbie Stillwaggon. 20. Don Kreitz Jr. 21. Michael Ruttkamp. 22. Fred Rahmer. 23. Frank Cozze. 24. Ryan Kissinger.
Did Not Qualify: Doug Esh, Jay Reichard, Troy Fraker, Jim Shuster, Trevor Utt, Rodney Westhafer, Glenndon Forsythe.
358 Sprint Feature (20 laps): 1. T.J. Stutts. 2. Mark Smith. 3. Pat Cannon. 4. Adrian Shaffer. 5. Nate Hammaker. 6. Eric Tomecek. 7. Jason Shultz. 8. Glenndon Forsythe. 9. Ryan Wilson. 10. Scott Fisher. 11. Derek Locke. 12. Dale Hammaker. 13. Rocky Magaro. 14. Aaron Eichelberger. 15. Doug Hammaker. 16. Rich Eichelberger. 17. Ted Thomas. 18. Austin Hogue. 19. Matt Findley. 20. Brie Hershey. 21. Jay Galloway. 22. Tyler Ross. 23. Todd Berkheimer. 24. Leah Starner.
Did Not Qualify: D.J. Montgomery, Dave Thrush, Matt Mountz, Brian Garland, Brock Zearfoss.